Energy and Industry

UAE: Putin majors in energy diplomacy

The belligerent, but judicious, projection of a revived Russian military machine and covert (digital and deniable human) resources have re-established Moscow as a major player in the Middle East and Africa – frustrating and sometimes baffling its...

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Iran: Gas field discovery in the south

Tehran has announced a natural gas discovery in southern Iran, local media reported on 9 October. The Eram field, located 200km from Shiraz in Fars province, is said to hold 19 trillion cubic feet of gas, of which 13tcf is recoverable. The field is...

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UAE: Abu Dhabi prepares rival oil benchmark

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) is to launch a new oil benchmark based on the light and relatively sulphur-free crude oil from the Murban oil field. It will be a feature of a new commodities exchange to be opened next year in Abu Dhabi. Adnoc,...

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Iran: Red Sea missile strike raises doubts about Syria deliveries

The Iranian-owned tanker Sabiti was hit by two missiles at around 5am on 11 October as it was steaming north up the Red Sea in international waters some 95km west of Jeddah. The resulting explosions holed the tanker and created an oil spill, but the...

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Riyadh and Tehran step back from the brink as Trump prevaricates

US President Donald Trump’s lack of enthusiasm for backing up his heated anti-Iranian rhetoric with meaningful military resources, even in the wake of last month’s attack on the Abqaiq oil facilities in Saudi Arabia, appears to be a key...

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Kuwaiti management issues undermine heavy crude ambitions

Several high-level sources in the country’s energy sector have told GSN that heavy crude is the lifeline to Kuwait Petroleum Company (KPC)’s energy future, as production at other fields has reached maturity over the past decade. However,...

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Perspectives

A selection of free articles from GSN's extensive database

International sanctions harden resolve among ordinary Iranians

The United States’ sanctions against Iran appear to be hardening views inside the Islamic Republic, according to a new survey of public opinion by IranPoll. Some 76% of those polled (by telephone among a representative sample of 1,017 Iranians from 4-12 December) now think it is “very important” for Iran to develop missiles, up from 74% in January 2018. A further 20% think it is “...

Issue 1075 - 23 February 2019

Iraq’s energy needs become a battleground in the US-Iran dispute

Prime Minister Adil Abdel-Mahdi and his government finding themselves in the uncomfortable position of being caught between the competing interests of two powerful antagonists, as United States pressure intensifies on Baghdad to cut its ties with Iran and hand lucrative business contracts to American bidders. Iran is a vital partner because of its provision of about one-third of Iraq’s ...

Issue 1073 - 24 January 2019

Iran: Gas sector may yet prove resilient to US sanctions

The confirmation on 20 August that French major Total was going to pull out of its $1bn deal to develop Phase 11 of the massive South Pars gas field came as little surprise. Total had warned it would be forced to abandon the project unless it secured a waiver from the United States ahead of the imposition of its second wave of ...

Issue 1065 - 6 September 2018

Morocco refinery problems for Al-Amoudi/Al-Sultan empire

Despite moves to mobilise new finance, concern is growing in Morocco about the financial health of the North African kingdom’s only refinery, operated by Société Marocaine d’Industrie de Raffinage (Samir) at Mohammedia, and its ability to remain the dominant player in the national products market. This follows the announcement of losses in 2014 and questions about the ability ...

Issue 993 - 21 May 2015

Financial and political agenda underpins Gulf commitments

The massive support from Gulf-based institutions for a new and hugely ambitious programme of power sector investments in Egypt may not be as quixotic as it first appears. The intention to back multi-gigawatt coal and renewable generation projects – announced at a conference in Sharm El-Sheikh in mid-March by seven large developers from Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Kuwait – is underpinned ...

Issue 990 - 2 April 2015

Iraq: Baghdad and KRG finally agree on oil revenues

The Iraqi federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) announced a draft agreement on sharing oil revenues on 2 December, following two days of negotiations between federal Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi and KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani. The deal, which builds on a temporary agreement signed in November, still needs to be approved by parliament and written into the 2015 budget. ...

Issue 983 - 11 December 2014

Russia considers nuclear co-operation with Iran

While in New York for the United Nations General Assembly, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani stated Tehran’s intention to continue working with Moscow on nuclear energy. “We are negotiating power generation using nuclear energy with Russia,” Rouhani told journalists on 27 September. “We will continue co-operation with Russia, as well as with other nations.”Rouhani said Tehran was, so far, satisfied ...

Issue 980 - 30 October 2014

Arbitration rules in Crescent’s favour versus NIOC

An international arbitration panel examining the failed deal between Crescent Petroleum and the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) to supply gas to the UAE has determined that the 25-year contract was valid and binding, and that NIOC has therefore been obligated to deliver gas since December 2005, according to a 10 August statement from Crescent’s partner Dana Gas. Crescent said it ...

Issue 976 - 4 September 2014

Oman: Government extends curb on foreign workers

Oman is to extend curbs on the hiring of foreign workers in the construction and housekeeping sectors as part of efforts to save more jobs for local citizens and limit outflows of money from the economy. The hiring of expatriates by private companies in those two sectors will be banned for six months from 4 May, the official Oman News Agency (...

Issue 968 - 17 April 2014

Improving relations between Baghdad and Ankara put KRG on edge

Recent promises to mend relations between the Kurdistan Regional Government and Baghdad have not led to any real progress on disputes over politics, land and oil. And as Baghdad makes overtures towards its former sparring partner – and close Kurdish ally – Turkey, the government. The 29 April framework accord signed by Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki and Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime ...

Issue 958 - 14 November 2013

Iraqi Kurdistan: Dana Gas takes KRG to court

The largest energy investor in Iraqi Kurdistan, Sharjah-based Dana Gas, has begun arbitration proceedings against the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) at the London Court of International Arbitration. Dana and its partners in Iraq say they want to “clarify certain contractual rights”, and recoup more than $1bn in unpaid receivables. The KRG says there are no outstanding receivables and that, in ...

Issue 957 - 31 October 2013

Qatar gas swap deal with Egypt collapses


Back in April, with relations between Qatar and then Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi looking strong, Qatar agreed to supply between 18 and 24 LNG cargoes to Egypt, which desperately needed gas to fulfill supply contracts and meet summer domestic demand. But disagreements over pricing saw the number of cargoes fall to 13 and, by mid to late August, reports started to surface that ...

Issue 954 - 19 September 2013

QP seeks increased role

Qatar will start supplying Dubai with liquefied natural gas in 2011, once the Qatargas 4 project is completed, Qatar Petroleum (QP) gas development manager Khalid Mohammed Al-Hitmi told GSN. Qatargas 4 is a joint venture between

Issue 888 - 29 October 2010

Qatar throws Benghazi a lifeline

Doha’s offer to buy crude from the interim council puts it at the forefront of initiatives to end the Qadhafi regime

Issue 898 - 8 April 2011

Kurdish oil compromise masks deep divisions

The Kurdistan regional and Iraqi federal governments have reached a temporary agreement on the export of oil from the Kurdistan region. But a resolution could yet be blocked in Baghdad where oil policy is still going nowhere

Issue 894 - 11 February 2011

Retired Bush-era officials make good in Kurdistan

While US diplomacy may not be getting very far in Baghdad – vice president Joe Biden’s recent visit did not lead to any breakthrough in negotiations on a new government – former diplomats and officials are doing well in Iraqi Kurdistan, acting as advisers to the Kurdistan Regional Government or its commercial partners

Issue 882 - 30 July 2010

Ambitious Crescent ties up with the Russians

Sharjah-based company’s oil and gas exploration deal with Rosneft will focus on the Mena region

Issue 878 - 4 June 2010

Iran looks east to outmanoeuvre sanctions

As the United States pushes for further sanctions over Iran’s nuclear programme, China’s emergence as a major player in oil production threatens to undermine efforts to target the Islamic Republic’s besieged energy industry

Issue 872 - 5 March 2010

Gamble pays off for Qatar’s LNG masterplan

Qatar ‘bet the farm’ on LNG but, more than a decade later, its determination has paid off

Issue 870 - 29 January 2010

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Bahrain's Economic Performance

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Gulf boundaries and hydrocarbons infrastructure

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The Gulf region: economy and society

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Iraqi Kurdistan hydrocarbons infrastructure map

Revised in January 2015, this map provides a detailed overview of hydrocarbons infrastructure in the Kurdistan area of Iraq.

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Saudi Arabia: Risks and rewards as Saudi Aramco share sale gears up

Speculation has been mounting that the Saudi government is set to move forward with the long-planned initial public offering...

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Anti-graft drive offers Saudi crown prince respite from foreign critics

Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman (MBS)’s reputation may still suffer on (parts of) the international stage as a result of...

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Gulf leaders air grievances and score points at UN assembly

The 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly began on 17 September and ran on until the end of the month. As ever,...

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17-18 November

Solar Asset Management MENA

Renaissance Downtown Hotel, Dubai

19-21 November

Middle East Electricity Saudi

Riyadh International Convention Center, Riyadh Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

9-10 December

Oman Sustainable Energy and Technology Summit

Crowne Plaza Hotel Muscat

10-12 December

Middle East Artificial Lift Forum (MEALF)

Muscat, Oman

25-27 January

Iraq Finance Expo

Baghdad International Fairground

27-28 January

Middle East and North Africa Energy 2020

Chatham House, London

13-14 April

The Solar & Wind Show MENA 2020

Egypt International Exhibitions Center, Cairo, Egypt

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